Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy

+Jefferson and King George III

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Vocabulary

+Jefferson and Henry

About this Program

  • 2010 Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy: Thomas Jefferson and Patrick Henry Converse
  • Presented by Poplar Forest, Blue Ridge PBS, Virginia Department of Education
  • Project made possible with funding from The Greater Lynchburg Community Trust and The Lynchburg Retail Merchants Foundation, Inc.

Program Description:

Seven years his junior and still a student of law in Williamsburg, Thomas Jefferson witnessed Patrick Henry’s defiant stand in opposition to Great Britain’s Stamp Act during the May 1765 session in the House of Burgesses.  Jefferson later wrote that he “heard the splendid display of Mr. Henry’s talents as a popular orator.  They were great, indeed:  such as I have never heard from any other man.  He appeared to me to speak as Homer wrote.”

Both men championed the colonists’ rights as English citizens, Henry – vocally in fiery and passionate language and Jefferson – on paper, writing with elegance, succinctness, and essence.  Both served in public office:  Henry 30 years and Jefferson 40 years.  They held the office of Governor of Virginia, elected to the Virginia House of Burgesses, served as delegates to the Continental Congress (Henry 1774-1775, Jefferson 1775-1776) and each were national symbols of the American fight for liberty against British tyranny.

They began as friends and close collaborators, together drafting the “Proclamation for a day of Fasting, Humiliation and Prayer” in 1774, and to draw together a consensus of their fellow Burgesses.  After the beginning of the war for independence Jefferson and Henry began to differ in opinions relative to a central government versus states rights (especially of Virginia), relationships between church and state, and what generally became known as the conflict in Federalist versus Anti-Federalist politics.

Lesson Plan Pages

+Jefferson and Peale

About this Program

  • 2009 Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy, Thomas Jefferson and Charles Willson Peale in Conversation
  • Presented by Poplar Forest, Blue Ridge PBS, Virginia Department of Education
  • Project made possible with funding from The Greater Lynchburg Community Trust and The Lynchburg Retail Merchants Foundation, Inc.

Program Description:

Born two years apart, almost to the day, Peale and Jefferson shared interest in many topics and activities.  Both were patriots, archaeologists, scientists, and inventors.  They were fascinated with agricultural innovations, science and natural history.  Many of the specimens Jefferson received from the Lewis and Clark westward expedition were exhibited in Peale’s natural history and art museum in Philadelphia (founded in 1802), including two live magpies, a live prairie dog and the Mandan buffalo robe.

In 1801 as Jefferson begins his first term in the Presidency, Peale conducts the first scientific exploration in the United States, unearthing the bones of a mastodon. Peale is perhaps best known as an artist, having painted the founding fathers — Jefferson, George Washington, John Hancock, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Alexander Hamilton and others.  Close to 1,100 paintings are credited to the talent of Peale.

Jefferson and Peale engage in conversation prompted by eighth grade students from Woodrow Wilson Middle school.  Interview questions range from science, art, archaeology, natural history, inventions and gadgets, music, politics, family, public education and American Independence. Students and teachers are invited to join this conversation and learn more about these two talented individuals.

Virginia Standards of Learning
“Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy” can assist teachers with the following Standards Of Learning

Other

+Jefferson and Dolley

About this Program

  • 2008 Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy, Thomas Jefferson and Dolley Madison
  • Presented by Poplar Forest, Blue Ridge PBS, Virginia Department of Education, Virginia Virtual Advanced Placement School
  • Project made possible with funding from The Greater Lynchburg Community Trust

Program Description

Heralded and admired by her contemporaries, Dolley Madison was once described as an individual with a “warm heart, that lent its glow to her cheek and its sparkle to her eye.” Gregarious Dolley will exert her grace and charm on Mr. Jefferson and students from Natural Bridge Elementary School as they converse on topics from Jefferson ’s presidency to the society of Washington City to “The great little Madison ” as Dolley once referred to her husband. Mrs. Madison will speak about the occasions and ceremonial functions she oversaw when asked by Jefferson to assist in the role of hostess at the President’s House. Jefferson and Mrs. Madison will share their thoughts with the students on Mr. Madison’s role as Secretary of State, and compare Jefferson ’s presidential administration with that of Mr. Madison’s. Dolley will regale Jefferson and the students as she describes her courageous patriotism in August 1814 when she rescued from the President’s House official documents and the Gilbert Stuart portrait of General Washington as British troops invaded and set fire to the city. They will discuss Dolley’s own successful endeavors bringing together her Washington society friends to fundraise for the infamous Lewis and Clark westward expedition.

Students and teachers can join this conversation and learn more about these two individuals, their early years, education, their duty to their country, their thoughts on democracy, and the new seat of government in Washington City.

Virginia Standards of Learning
“Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy” can assist teachers with the following Virginia Standards Of Learning objectives.

Lesson Plan Pages

Biographies

Other

Teacher Notes are available by emailing TeacherNotes@poplarforest.org.  Please provide your name, email address, grade taught, name of school, City, State, school phone and fax numbers.

+Jefferson and Burr

About this Program

  • 2007 Shaping the World: Conversation on Democracy, Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr – People, Places and Politics
  • Presented by Poplar Forest, Blue Ridge PBS, Virginia Department of Education, Virginia Virtual Advanced Placement School
  • Project made possible with funding from Bank of America and The Greater Lynchburg Community Trust

Program Description:
They were both Democratic-Republicans — Thomas Jefferson, born in Virginia; Aaron Burr, in New Jersey.  They both were men of brilliant intelligence.  They both played roles in the American Revolution, one yielding the pen, the other fighting the war.  Both were lawyers turned politicians to better serve their nation.  Both were controversial.

In the presidential election of 1800, Jefferson and Burr would tie at 73 electoral votes.  On the 36th ballot in the House of Representatives Jefferson was elected President and Burr Vice President.  Aaron Burr would serve as Vice President from 1801 – 1805.  Following his tenure as Jefferson’s Vice President, Burr visits the American West and finds himself the center of an accusation of treason.  In January 1807, President Jefferson issued a proclamation calling for Burr’s arrest.

Students from Appomattox Middle School confront these two men, seeking to find answers that give us insight into their lives, their roles in the American Revolution and the new government, and into those dark days known as The Burr Conspiracy.  Join this conversation and learn more about these two men, their early years, education, careers, their roles in the American Revolution and the American Government, their thoughts on democracy, and their views on their country’s future.

Virginia Standards of Learning
“Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy” can assist teachers with the following Standards Of Learning

Lesson Plans and Curriculum

Biographies

Other

+Jefferson and Napoleon

About this Program

  • 2006 Shaping the World: Conversation on Democracy, Thomas Jefferson Talks With Napoleon Bonaparte
  • Presented by Poplar Forest, Blue Ridge PBS, Virginia Department of Education, Virginia Virtual Advanced Placement School

To view the video via the Internet, click here.

Program Description

Thomas Jefferson and Napoleon Bonaparte are interviewed by students from Amherst Middle School.  Among other things, their answers explore the roles of democratic principles and dictatorship. Students and teachers can join this conversation and learn more about these two men, their early years, education, careers, the American and French Revolutions, their thoughts on democracy and dictatorship, and their views on their country’s future.

Virginia Standards of Learning
“Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy” can assist teachers with the following Standards Of Learning

Lesson Plans and Curriculum

Biographies

Other

+Jefferson and George Washington

About this Program

  • 2005 Shaping the World: Conversation on Democracy, Thomas Jefferson Talks With George Washington
  • Presented by Poplar Forest, Blue Ridge PBS, Virginia Department of Education, Virginia Virtual Advanced Placement School

Program Description

In this interchange between Thomas Jefferson and George Washington, students will have the opportunity to learn more about the men, their opinions on a variety of democratic issues, their views on women and slavery, Washington’s Presidency and their innovative farming practices on their plantations.  The men are interviewed by 5th grade students from the G.O. Center at Robert S. Payne Elementary School in Lynchburg, Virginia.

Virginia Standards of Learning
“Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy” can assist teachers with the following Standards Of Learning

Lesson Plans and Curriculum

Biographies

Other

+The Presidential Debate of 1804

About this Program

  • 2004 Shaping the World: Conversation on Democracy, The Presidential Debate of 1804
  • Presented by Poplar Forest, Blue Ridge PBS, Virginia Department of Education, Virginia Virtual Advanced Placement School

Program Description

The presidential election of 1804 would be the first conducted under the 12th Amendment which was ratified in June 1804. Previously, whichever presidential candidate received the second highest electoral vote became vice president. The new amendment mandated separate ballots for the office of president and vice president.

The pattern of political contention of 1804 was rich with current events:  a national effort to decrease the public debt; Haitian independence declared in January as residents defeat French forces trying to re-establish slavery on the island; the launch of the Lewis and Clark expedition from St. Louis in May 1804; and trade questions stemming from the war between England and France.

The Democratic-Republicans nominate Thomas Jefferson of Virginia.  Jefferson seeks his second term as president after a lengthy career in public service in which he served as governor of Virginia, vice president, Secretary of State, and Minister to France. In his first term as president, Jefferson not only doubled the size of the United States with the Louisiana Purchase, but he launched the first national exploration of the continent in hopes of furthering U.S. commerce and scientific knowledge.

Jefferson’s running mate on the Democratic-Republican ticket is George Clinton, governor of New York. As a young man Clinton fought in the French and Indian War, and later became an attorney who defended members of the Sons of Liberty.  He served as a member of the Second Continental Congress before being commissioned a brigadier general during the American Revolution.

Opposing President Jefferson is Charles Cotesworth Pinckney of South Carolina, running on the Federalist ticket.  Pinckney rose to the rank of general in the Revolutionary War, and served nearly two years as a prisoner of the war after the fall of Charleston in 1780. A proponent of a strong central government, Pinckney was one of the first leaders in the National Constitutional Convention. He represented the United States briefly in the Netherlands and France, and commanded American forces in the South between 1798 and 1800 when war with France seemed imminent.

General Pinckney’s running mate is Rufus King of New York who many Republicans considered a staunch monarchist. King served briefly in the American Revolution, represented his home state of Massachusetts in the U.S. Congress and during the National Constitutional Convention.  He served in the New York state legislature, the U.S. Senate and as U.S. Minister to Great Britain.

In this program Thomas Jefferson, Charles Cotesworth Pinckney and their vice presidential running mates present their credentials and platform for consideration for the highest offices in the United States.  The candidates are interviewed by students from Altavista High School.

Virginia Standards of Learning
“Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy” can assist teachers with the following Standards Of Learning

Lesson Plans and Curriculum

Candidate Biographies

Other

+Jefferson and Lewis

About this Program

  • 2003 Shaping the World: Conversation on Democracy, “The Object of our Mission”, Thomas Jefferson confers with Meriwether Lewis
  • Presented by Poplar Forest, Blue Ridge PBS, Virginia Department of Education, Virginia Satellite Education Network

Program Description

Students (grades 5-12) and teachers can join a conversation in which Meriwether Lewis reports to President Thomas Jefferson on the success of the westward expedition.  Jefferson had initiated the proceedings which led to the purchase of the Louisiana Territory in 1803, as well as the commissioning of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to find “the most direct and practicable water communication across this continent, for the purpose of commerce.”   When the Corps of Discovery departed St. Louis in May 1804, the party consisted of Captains Lewis and Clark, 26 volunteers and Army regulars, Clark’s black slave York and Lewis’s Newfoundland dog Seaman.  Expedition members had no idea how they would be received but realized with each passing mile that their success would depend upon the good will of the native people.  Even with their assistance, the search for a “Northwest Passage” would prove for members of the Corps of Discovery to be the most difficult part of their entire journey.  Jefferson had also instructed them to gather detailed information about the plants, animals, soil, minerals, weather and Native American tribes they encountered.

In this interchange with President Jefferson and Captain Lewis, students have the opportunity to learn more about the extraordinary journey into what Jefferson called the “Mysterious West.”  Seventh graders from Central Academy Middle School query Jefferson and Lewis on the reasons for the expedition, the secret message to Congress, the instructions and preparation for the journey, the members of the Corps of Discovery, the Native Americans encountered, the plants and animals of the west, and the day to day life of being in uncharted territory.

Virginia Standards of Learning
“Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy” can assist teachers with the following Standards Of Learning

Lesson Plans and Curriculum

Biographies

Other

+Jefferson and Lafayette

About this Program

  • 2002 Shaping the World: Conversation on Democracy, A Conversation with Thomas Jefferson and Marquis de Lafayette
  • Presented by Poplar Forest, Blue Ridge PBS, Virginia Department of Education, Virginia Satellite Education Network

Program Description

Students and teachers can join a conversation between Thomas Jefferson and the Marquis de Lafayette as students from Forest Middle School engage the two men on the topics of the American Revolution, Lafayette’s role in that revolution, Jefferson’s years in France as the U.S. Minister, the French Revolution, their military and political careers, and their views on the meaning of democracy and advice for the future.

In this interchange between Jefferson and Lafayette, students will have the opportunity to learn more about the men and their opinions on a variety of democratic issues, their work on the American Declaration of Independence and the French Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen and their views and concerns for their respective countries.

Virginia Standards of Learning
“Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy” can assist teachers with the following Standards Of Learning

Lesson Plans and Curriculum

Other

Primary Sources

+Jefferson and Adams

About this Program

  • 2001 Shaping the World: Conversation on Democracy, A Conversation with Thomas Jefferson and John Adams
  • Presented by Poplar Forest, Blue Ridge PBS, Virginia Department of Education, Virginia Virtual Advanced Placement School

Program Description

Students and teachers can join a conversation between two friends and past presidents of the United States: John Adams, second president, and Thomas Jefferson, third president.

In this interchange between Jefferson and Adams students will have the opportunity to learn more about the men, and their differing opinions on a variety of democratic issues, their work on the Declaration of Independence, the election of 1800, their roles as ambassadors abroad, their tenure as Presidents residing in the White House, and their views and concerns for the country.

Thomas Jefferson and John Adams first met in 1775 at the Continental Congress in Philadelphia and the two began a close friendship.  Adams was a member of the Federalist Party and Jefferson was a classic Republican.  Despite their political differences, they maintained their friendship until 1801 when Jefferson became President.  During this election, Jefferson defeated Adams by eight electoral votes.  It was the first transfer of power from one political party to another.  In a peaceful exchange of power on March 4, 1801 Jefferson delivered his inaugural speech, stating “We are all Republicans, we are all Federalists.”  He longed for this young country to unite as one.  Jefferson referred to this time in our nation’s history as “the revolution of 1800.” Jefferson and Adams greatly contributed to the shaping of our country during its first fifty years and both left lasting legacies.  During their retirement years, Jefferson and Adams renewed their friendship and corresponded until their deaths on July 4, 1826.

Virginia Standards of Learning
“Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy” can assist teachers with the following Standards Of Learning

Lesson Plans and Curriculum

Other

“Shaping the World: Conversations on Democracy” was brought to you by:
Poplar Forest
In 1773, Thomas Jefferson and his wife, Martha, inherited approximately 4800 acres from the estate of John Wayles, Martha’s father.  Jefferson designed an octagonal villa and in 1806 traveled to Bedford County to oversee the laying of the foundation. Poplar Forest was to serve as a retreat for Jefferson and his grandchildren.  Poplar Forest was a working farm with more than sixty slaves living on the property.  The plantation was sold to William Cobbs after Jefferson’s death. The acreage dwindled and the house underwent many structural changes.  In 1984, the nonprofit Corporation for Jefferson’s Poplar Forest formed to rescue this landmark for the educational and cultural benefit of the public.  The exterior restoration of the house was completed in 1998 and earned an Honor award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Archaeology and restoration continue.  For more information on Poplar  Forest, call (434) 525-1806.Blue Ridge Public Television
Since 1966, Blue Ridge Public Television has provided instructional television for western Virginia, and today broadcasts SOL-correlated programs to 39 school divisions with 197,000 students.  BRPTV works on-site with all communities of learners, including teachers, pre-schoolers, and adult learners. BRPTV sponsors Virginia’s JASON Project, Homework Helpline, Reading Rainbow Young Authors and Illustrators, Young Heroes, and the McGlothlin Awards for Teaching Excellence.

Virginia Department of Education and the Virginia Satellite Educational Network
The Virginia Satellite Educational Network (VSEN) provides advanced placement and foreign language courses to K-12 students. Programs that support the Virginia Standards of Learning for students, teachers, and administrators are also delivered through VSEN. The Department of Education and VSEN are pleased to make Thomas Jefferson’s Poplar Forest’s program available via satellite to students across the Commonwealth and nation.

Curriculum researched and developed by Octavia Starbuck and Jackie Almond